The Forever Ready Everywhereist – Interview with Geraldine DeRuiter

33 Minute Read | Interviews

With so many travel blogs being about as interesting and engaging as a Tripadvisor ‘Things to Do’ list, Geraldine DeRuiter’s Everywhereist blog is a breath of fresh air.

Geraldine DeRuiter Interview

Well more like gulps and gasps of air, as you can’t help laughing out loud at her totally honest and relatable stories that have won her awards like: TIME magazine’s Top 25 Blogs of 2011, The Independent’s 50 Best Travel Websites and Huffington Post’s Top Travel Blogs of 2014. As well as engaging posts that tell you all about the beautiful scenery, historic artefacts and local delicacies, she also writes about the things that you actually want to know, like how many cute animals there are in Turkey, what the reasonable reaction is to your husband leaving the milk out and the dangers of having an opinion on the internet.

The blog began after Geraldine was laid off from her job as a copywriter, and so started accompanying her husband Rand on his work trips around the world. With this fairly enviable lifestyle, Geraldine has managed to charm readers worldwide and has recently published her first book, All Over the Place: Adventures in Travel, True Love, and Petty Theft.

Woj: I read your wonderful book while I was in Thailand and it was super inspiring. I love this quote. “Never debate people whose ancestors conquered most of the known world while wearing mini-skirts and sandals.”

How has family has shaped who you are today?

Geraldine: Oh, gosh, I mean, they are the reason I am in therapy. I think everything comes down to family origin. All of my neuroses, all of my habits, all of my tendencies. Even the ones that don’t come from my family are a reaction to them. So, completely 100%. There’s no escaping it.

Woj: You can’t escape your roots. So, as a seasoned traveler, you must be getting pretty close to dethroning yourself from your self-proclaimed ‘clueless’ title.

What’s the first thing that comes to mind as your most sensible and consistent piece of travel advice?

Geraldine: You would think that I would have an answer after so long! The one thing I have been telling everyone, and it completely ties in with my entire travel ethos, is don’t worry about traveling the right way.

Because there’s so much pressure to do that. There’s Rick Steves and Anthony Bourdain and Samantha Brown and all of these incredibly charming, successful people who tell you how you should be traveling. I think all of that is just garbage because all that does is create a system in which you can fail at a vacation and that’s terrible.

So, just toss that notion out and tell yourself that you can’t do it wrong.

A Monkey in Gibraltar

A Monkey in Gibraltar

Woj: Well, it’s their version of perfect, isn’t it?

Geraldine: It’s so subjective. We’ve traveled with so many friends and they’ll get up at 7:30 because they have to see this and that. I’m like, “This is a nightmare. I am never traveling with you again”. And so, I learned that what’s right for them is sometimes very wrong for me. Learn what works for you and realise that there shouldn’t be rules.

There shouldn’t be these universal lessons on how we travel. Just do it the way you want to.

Woj: So travel a lot and find your own way of navigating the world?

Geraldine: What I usually tell people is, “Yeah, it’s okay to make mistakes. It’s okay to not know.” There’s no way you can mess up really. Or there is, I guess, because I mess up all the time. I have no moral coming out of this. There is no lesson.

You’ve also mentioned that part of the reason your blog exists is due to Ciaran forcing you out onto the streets of Sydney. Can you walk me through that experience?

Geraldine: Sure. So, our friend Ciaran Norris lived in England and wanted to move to Sydney. He was attending this conference and it was one of the first international trips I had taken. I didn’t know what I was doing, so I obviously was not going to go out on my own. That sounded nightmarish. I was in a foreign country full of strange animals and I could get attacked by a koala. I was terrified.

Somebody asked me what I was going to be doing that day and I said I was too scared to go out. Ciaran overheard and said, “Uh-uh, no, absolutely not.” He said, “Leave. You are getting out of this hotel and you are going to explore the city.”

I was so scared because, I don’t know if it’s the same for you being from Australia, but if you’re an American and you hear the English accent, it is terrifying. It is like hearing Severus Snape from the Harry Potter books. You feel like, “Oh, god, okay, I have to do whatever you say.” I was more afraid of Ciaran in that moment than I was of what I assumed were rabid koalas. I’ve since learned you don’t have rabies at all on your island, right?

So, there was nothing to fear. I had a fantastic time, but I definitely wouldn’t have done it if he hadn’t sort of shamed me and scolded me into it.

Geraldine at Sydney Opera House

Rand & Geraldine, love is Everywhereist.

And what did you discover?

Geraldine: I remember I went to Luna Park. I think I took a ferry, which doesn’t sound miraculous. But you have to understand for someone who was absolutely petrified of everything and completely directionally challenged, this was like Manifest Destiny. This was crossing the Alps.

Woj: There’s a lot of steps in that process. You’ve got to get tickets. You’ve got to speak to Australian people…

Geraldine: I know. God forbid I had to figure out your strange and different language.

Woj: Yep. In your book, you say, “Sometimes you have no idea in what direction you’re headed, but you keep going anyway. Sometimes miraculously you end up in the right place.”

This also seems like a great way of explaining the journeys that entrepreneurs embark on. It’s never a straight line upwards and to the right. It’s a bit of a zig-zag and all over.

How do you avoid the pitfalls of negative thinking and refuse to lose hope along your journey?

Geraldine: I think there’s several things. One is that you need to realise that you are not determining every factor of it. I think that’s true whether you’re doing a startup, you’re on a trip or if you are writing a book.

At some point, it takes a life of its own and it’s going to lead you. I think you need to be okay with being a passive journeyman or woman on that trip. You know, you need to be able to sit back and let it guide you.

And the other thing is when things do go badly and when stuff does hit the fan, I think you need to try and think of it as part of the story.

Maybe the entire lesson to be learned is that you need to share that negative story.

But I would say don’t get bogged down by the bad things that happen. See them as part of getting you to your endpoint.

Woj: You also once said, “If you try everything, you can figure out what feels natural and what feels right for you. That’s a big part of figuring out your brand.”

Geraldine: We should put that in context because out of context it sounds like I’m referring to sex acts. I am talking about blogging. It could apply to your sex life… I don’t think you should try everything…We’re not recording, are we?

What would you say to people who think they need to map out their brand and voice 100% before they start producing anything?

Geraldine: If it feels comfortable to you to map out every single thing that you are going to do, and to figure out your blog, go ahead and go it. But I can guarantee you within the first six months, you’re gonna be like, “This isn’t working.”

If you’ve tied yourself to a concept or an idea and you are not able to shift or move around or try new things, you’re gonna feel really, really stifled.

But hey, if you wanna stick to something, do it but know that the second that it doesn’t work out, I will be mocking you openly and saying I told you so in a very encouraging way.

“The Everywhereist” is a pretty ambitious name for a travel blog. Is there anywhere you don’t think you will ever go?

Geraldine: Just FYI readers, we’re sitting in a room that is space travel themed and I’m looking around thinking, “Yeah, no, I don’t wanna go to space.”

Right now I can’t think of anything. There are certain things that terrify me, but part of the wonderful thing about travel is you don’t know until you try it. There are places that I didn’t think I would even like that I ended up loving. I would say I can’t definitively say anything now unless we are talking about the deep abyss of space or the Mariana Trench. Or Florida. I won’t go back to Florida.

Dear God, I grew up there, so that’s part of my long, deep-seated disdain for the state that raised me.

The infinite skies of Santa Fe

Woj: So, we were thinking about going to Florida, but…

Geraldine: South Florida is amazing. Go to Miami, go to the Keys. That’s cool. I can now never run for office in Florida. Oh, God.

Woj: We’ve been avoiding L.A. a little bit. But is it a place to see just to do some people watching?

Geraldine: In that respect, you should go. It is a fascinating place especially if you are not an American, because we’re all so used to it. It’s the weird fancy cousin who had a nose job and only talks about the time that they guest-appeared on “House.” I think it’s so cute to see.

Woj: That sounds like a good recommendation, not travel advice.

Geraldine: Not travel advice, no. I don’t believe in that.

Your blog is one big love letter to Rand… so what has Jeff Goldblum done to score so high on your list of favourite things?

Geraldine: Oh, boy, I mean, it’s sort of it exceeds definition. It’s like, what do you love more, your husband or oxygen? Well, I can’t live without oxygen. I would hate to be without Rand but I can survive without him. I think he understands Jeff is oxygen.

But it’s become its own beast. People know me for this mad love affair with Jeff Goldblum that has been in place since I was 13 years old. I have always said I hope that I never meet him. I staunchly hope that I never meet him, because either that experience will be a letdown or (and I think this is the more likely scenario) my entire life after that would be, so…

Woj: It would be very hard to recover.

Geraldine: Yes.

Woj: I think he is opening up a food truck in Sydney as well.

Geraldine: Yes, Chef Goldblum’s. I have a lot of feelings about it.  There’s a line from Much Ado About Nothing. I’m bringing Shakespeare into it because I’m fancy. Beatrice is talking to the Duke about how no man is right for her, and he says, “Would you consider me?”. I’m gonna get emotional because that’s what Shakespeare does to me, because I’m a nerd.

She says, “Your grace is too fine a dress to wear every day.” Which is the greatest way of letting someone down. She is madly in love with Benedick, so she is turning down this amazing Adonis of a man. So when Jeff Goldblum comes up usually my answer is “his grace is too fine a dress to wear every day” because I’m madly in love with my own Benedick.

Woj: It reminds me of a story you told where you and Rand got married. There’s another Shakespeare connection there.

Geraldine: There’s a strong one because we are huge, huge nerds who did not get laid in high school at all. We were all just completely repellent to the opposite sex. When that is your life, you seek out Shakespeare because there is unrequited love and romance. You’re reading them like, “You are so like me, fictional character that was created hundreds of years ago.”

How to not pick an author photo for your book jacket

Night of the Living Blog

We were married in Ashland, Oregon which is the home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. They do phenomenal shows, world-renowned shows. We love theatre and I think it’s because there’s very little conflict or drama in our lives. It’s just it’s lovely and wonderful and romantic, and if you were to watch it’s super boring.

Woj: There’s so much positivity in your writing and your outlook on life.

So, besides the TSA pat downs that you’re fond of, what were some of the positives that came out of Steve, your brain tumor?

Geraldine: Yesterday was my five-year anniversary of getting my tumor removed. I think one of the best things to emerge from that is you learn what it’s like to have brain surgery and that is a rather unique experience. You can share that with other people who are about to experience it.

One of the things I found when I was scouring the internet, which is what everyone does when they are about to have brain surgery and is a terrible idea, is that you are looking for someone who is going to say something about what it’s actually like.

You will find stuff from the Mayo Clinic and from WebMD and all these very clinical sites that are not helpful at all. No one actually talks about the real experience of it. So I thought, okay, I’m not finding that search result. I’m going to create that content myself.

Those are consistently the most trafficked pages on the blog. Although I don’t consider the success of that to be, “Oh, look at the traffic that has come from it,” but more, “Hey, you know, these people have the same question I did” and I was able to at least tell them about my experience.

When am I going to feel normal again after brain surgery

Goodbye Steve

I think that was a very positive experience. I learned a lot about my relationship. I learned a lot about friendships I had. I think that’s true whenever you go through anything difficult that there are people who will come and take care of you in a way that you hadn’t anticipated. It’s really wonderful.

Woj: Why do you think there’s not a lot of content out there? Why do you think people aren’t brave enough to write about the process that they are going through?

Geraldine: I don’t know that it’s that they are not brave enough to. I feel like there’s not a huge overlap between people who are prominent bloggers and people who have had brain surgery. I think people are writing about it, it might just be hard to find.

Prominent Bloggers and Brain Surgery Venn Diagram

Woj: So, if you write blogs that’s a good preventative tip?

Geraldine: To avoid having brain surgery? Unfortunately, I don’t think that’s how it works, because I was writing a blog beforehand and I still got one.

My new theory is that if you eat dessert every day, you will not grow a brain tumor. I have no way of proving it, but that is what I’m trying to do.

So I think that for a lot of people it’s really hard. It’s hard to be vulnerable in a way and to put yourself out there. I think it was for me, too. I had a huge discussion with Rand because my blog is tangentially about travel and my brain tumor wasn’t. I thought, “Well, I shouldn’t write about this.” and Rand said, “What are you talking about? You absolutely should write about this.” So that kinda changed my perspective. But I almost didn’t write about.

Woj: I see your blog not so much about travel but about journeys, which is similar.

Geraldine: That’s beautiful. I’m stealing that.

Woj: I was also horrified to read about your recent experience with harassment on a flight. That was terrible.

As a total contrast, who are the some of the loveliest people you have met on your travels?

Geraldine: Oh, gosh, what a beautiful question. There was a flight attendant on a BA flight coming back from London to Seattle, and this woman was a ray of sunshine. She was handing out newspapers and she had a copy of the Daily Mail and I was like, “Oh, no thank you.” And she goes, “You know what this is, isn’t it? Yeah. We use this to line the dustbin.” Later she was just walking up and down the aisle with a passenger’s baby, just like soothing him as she walked up and down. She stopped by me because she saw I was looking and she goes, “Isn’t he gorgeous?”.

Then at the end of the flight everyone was rushing to get off and she rushed back and she said, “You will have to excuse me. I just want to help them get off the plane with the little one.”  This woman was amazing and I should have gotten her name and written British Airways. She still stays in my mind.

Geraldine in Athens, Greece

Image Source: Paste Magazine

Woj: In that same post, you wrote about how being a woman can be a terrifying thing. Do you think it’s harder being a woman at home or abroad?

Geraldine: It depends where you live. I am a white woman who lives in America, which in terms of the privilege spectrum is basically like winning the lottery. I have this belief and faith in the system that if something does happen to me, that justice will be served. Which is crazy. So I do feel a lot more vulnerable on the road than at home.

Woj: I love your motto, “I’ll rescue myself, thanks”. It seems like you and Rand have a great relationship in which he supports you 100% without robbing you of your agency at all. My favourite quote from the book from Rand was, “You’re always a cab ride away from me.”

Is there anything you think other men can learn from this?

Geraldine: I think one of my favourite things about Rand is that he is such a staunch feminist, that he identifies as one and that he is very vocal. I think he might even be wearing today his button that says, “Feminist.” that he wears all the time. I think it would be wonderful if more men identified as that. I think it would be amazing for the world. We’re not there.

Woj: So, how can men start?

Geraldine: I would say by listening to the narratives that women are telling about their experiences, and identifying and realising that this is true and this is the reality for a lot of women. I think the initial response whenever an oppressor hears any story like that is to get defensive and say, “Oh, you know, I am not like that.”

We see the ‘not all men’ hashtag and the ‘not all white people’ hashtag. I think that’s not a helpful reaction because that response makes you feel better but it doesn’t help to solve the problem. One of the things to do instead of reacting is listening. Before proclaiming that you are not part of the problem, try to solve the problem.

Woj: I interviewed Lewis Howes and he’s putting together a book called “The Mask of Masculinity,” where he explores the notion of masculinity and he gets everyone’s perspectives on what that actually means today. I think there’s a certain expectation in society to be a male and act and behave a certain way.

Do you think debunking those sorts of myths or exploring those areas is going to be a step in the right direction?

Geraldine: I think we should open up the conversation and let people know there is no right way to be a man. You know, one of my favourite quotes to emerge from 2016 – when we lost both Bowie and Prince – was that these people taught us that there is no one right way to be a man, and I love that idea.

There’s a lot of pressure where a lot of toxic masculinity stems from. I think we need to teach young men it’s okay to be a feminist. Once we start that conversation, I think it helps everyone.

The Everywhereist on FYI's inspired

You and Rand seem just like the strongest and happiest couple. What’s your secret?

Geraldine: Oh, boy. I wrote a post about this because a friend of mine asked me the same question and I was so blown away by it. And he asked me it… oh, I’m feeling emotional again.

Woj: Hashtag tears.

Geraldine: Hashtag all the feels. By the way, I feel like I should note I find hashtags absolutely insufferable and I feel like we’re in a culture of them and so everything that I am saying is tongue in cheek. Please do not hate me or assume that I am a slave to the hashtag.

But this friend of mine, it was the same night that he told us that his partner was having a baby. He said, “So, what’s the secret to being happy forever?”  I was absolutely stunned by the question. But the answer that I came to, and Rand and I had two different ones, is that I treat him like a stranger. I don’t mean in a sort of a kinky sex act kind of way. I mean that if someone came to your house and was a guest in your home, you would offer them a glass of water and they would say, “Thank you.” You would assume the best intent from this person and this person would be appreciative and would not take you for granted.

I basically try to be as grateful to Rand and as grateful to everything that he does for me as though he were not obligated to do it.

It sounds awful, but at some point, we can get to a point where we treat our spouse worse than a stranger.

So, if he brings me a glass of water, I thank him the way I would if someone just randomly brought me one.

Geraldine and Rand
The thing that Rand said to me was that he never… oh, emotions. I’m feeling all of them. But he said, “I never stop trying to be deserving and worthy of your love.” I was like, “Well, you really don’t need to do that much. Like seriously, you just need to put your clothing in the right hamper and we’ll be fine.” I think in both of those situations, there’s an element of not taking the person for granted.

Woj: Yeah, that’s beautiful. What I have discovered about happiness as well, it’s all about lowering expectations.

Geraldine: Oh, my gosh, maybe that’s why Rand is so happy. Maybe his expectations of me are just a theoretical zero. I do think that’s true though and I think this is part of why I always say there’s no right way to travel. The second you start thinking that there is, you start having expectations. I think that if you think that there is a right way to be married, you start having weird expectations.

Woj: I have spoken to Rand previously about his addiction to transparency.

Is being married to someone as committed to transparency as Rand ever a challenge? Or would you consider yourself a very transparent person too?

Geraldine: It’s hard to say because I’ve been with him for so long, but I feel like I wasn’t as transparent and he’s pulled me into that world. It was definitely something I had to become accustomed to.

It’s a clear glass bubble in which my husband lives and it’s definitely not my comfort zone as much as his. I mentioned it in the book that there was a point around the time of my brain surgery where Rand felt this need to be transparent. So he got everyone together at the office and he said, “Look, I just want to let you all know what’s going on in my life. Geraldine has a brain tumor and the doctors aren’t sure what it is or what this is going to mean.” He didn’t tell me that he was going to do that. We learned some lessons there that while transparency is great, you need to also have empathy and remember who else is being influenced by your transparency.

Woj: I love that you go into more detail in the book about that story as well. One thing that Rand has been very open about is his experience with depression.

Geraldine: Yes.

Woj: In his long, ugly year blog post, he writes that he can hardly bear to be away from you for more than a day or two at a time. Something that isn’t discussed nearly enough are the experiences of friends and partners who support someone with depression. What was that year like for you?

Geraldine: I don’t wanna say I didn’t realise he was depressed, but I didn’t think that this was a problem that I could fix.

I think that that is a good way for any partner to actually go into it, to not think that you can fix someone’s depression, because you fundamentally can’t. It became small things that I could do to be supportive.

When you are in a relationship with someone and you see that they’re having a hard time, your immediate response is “What can I do to make this better?” It was hard to let that go, but it was also an important thing to do.

How to be happy forever - Rand and Geraldine

A case study in happiness

Also, I don’t think marriages are tit for tat. I don’t keep score and I don’t think Rand does either, and if we were keeping score he would be so vastly ahead of me, I would be doomed. But I’ve dealt with so much stuff that he’s helped me through. I’ve been laid off, I have had jobs that I hated, I have suffered from depression, my father fell incredibly ill, my father passed away, my uncle passed away… My husband has helped me through so many things that it was kinda like hey, you know what? It’s his turn.

Not that you should keep score, but it felt like a natural progression. I think our relationship was already the sort of partnership where you know that things do not always go well and you know that sometimes times are hard. And so, I already knew that, and his depression didn’t catch me out of left field for that reason.

What would you tell people who are in the same position now that you were in when Rand was struggling most with depression?

Geraldine: I would say to realise that this is not something that you can fix. You need to understand that and find ways of supporting your partner like seeking external ways for them to be better. Finding people who have been in similar situations to talk to.

Also self-care. Take care of yourself because in order to be a good supportive partner, you need to be in a healthy mental state.

You once said, “I’m reminded that my mistakes don’t mean I’m a failure as a human. They just mean I’m human.” How important is this revelation for life in general and why do you think society generally is unsupportive of mistakes?

Geraldine: Oh, dang, I said that. That sounds profound. I think because vulnerability is terrifying, and we don’t wanna show vulnerability. I think it took me a long time to realise that it takes truly strong people to show that they have made their mistakes and to own up to their mistakes.

I say this in a country right now where the president wouldn’t even admit that he mistyped covfefe. I don’t know if you saw this tweet that came out, and I hate to make it political, but now here we are and I’m raging about it. He wrote covfefe on Twitter where he has millions of followers, billions.

It is his main ability to communicate with the world, which is terrifying. But rather than say, “Hey, funny, I made a typo,” the White House Press Secretary was like, “Oh, no, it was intentional, and the people who read it know what it was supposed to mean,” And I’m like, “Are you kidding me?”

We are so afraid of showing vulnerability that we’re not even owning up to our mistakes.

When you are vulnerable, you can actually learn from your mistakes if you admit them and you see what happened. I think other people can too and I think that you build a really strong relationship with whoever you are trying to communicate to. When you see someone who is vulnerable, it’s actually statistically proven, you like them more.

We’re so hard wired from a very young age. How hard is it for people to be able to say, “I don’t know the answer,” or “I screwed up”? It’s impossible. But once you start doing it, it’s really freeing and wonderful because you can actually start to learn. If you never say, “I don’t know,” then you never endeavor to learn.

Geraldine's travel adventures on the beach

Image Source: Paste Magazine

Woj: You’ve also said, “Sometimes you have to stop fighting the chaos and just embrace it.” So, with so much chaos in the world… a tweet-happy president…

How important is it to take care of our own chaos before we can help others and then the world?

Geraldine: Obviously self-care is very important. I think for a lot of Americans right now, we are having trouble finding that balance because there’s so many things to stress out about.

In terms of embracing the chaos, I’m referring to the personal chaos that one feels. I do not think you should embrace chaos when it is, say, coming from the highest office in the land.

At that point, if you see chaos, I think you can speak out against it and you can rage and you can be angry and you can protest and you can organise. Our anger and our worry, it does need to be channeled into effective ways.

So it needs to be, “Well, what am I going to do? How am I going to make this situation better? Am I going to work to preserve voting rights? Am I going to register voters? Am I going to fight homelessness? Am I going to volunteer for these organisations?” It needs to be channeled in a productive way. But in terms of your personal chaos, I think there’s something to be said about realizing that you can’t control everything, you know, that some things are just beyond your abilities and that’s okay.

Woj: I’m going to quote your book one more time. You said: “Everything changes us… We are constantly adding layers to ourselves in brush strokes big and small. The canvas is ever-evolving.”

How complete is your canvas, and what does the future look like for Geraldine?

Geraldine: Oh, that’s the great thing. You never know. You have no idea how complete your canvas is because I thought I was, to a degree, done when I finished this book. It has been sort of the aspiration that I had since I was a kid. I was like, “Oh, I’m gonna write a book. I’m gonna be a published author.” Right after I was done with the manuscript, I thought I was going to get hit by a car or something. I thought I was going to cease to exist because I’m like, “Well, I’m done. My purpose on this earth has been realized, so something like the end is nigh for me.” And I am still, knock on wood, I’m still here for at least a little bit.

All Over the Place: Adventures in Travel, True Love, and Petty Theft on Amazon

What that taught me is that the finish line is always moving and so you think you’ve completed the canvas, but you can’t see all of it. Right? You have no perspective. I’m 36 years old.

I don’t know what my entire life is gonna look like. I don’t know what the arc of it is. I can’t see the entire completed picture and that’s kinda the wonderful thing about it.

So, right now I wrote one book and you gotta go do another one. That’s what the path is. My agent would very much like me to figure out my next book.

Geraldine: I mean, I started a blog after I got laid off as a means for killing time and I didn’t know what it was going to be. After a while, I thought that it will be my online portfolio and it’ll get people to read my work. But there were so many days of “What am I doing?”. And Rand said, “Just keep writing” and it led to the book and where it is now. So, you don’t know and I don’t think you’ll be able to say when the canvas is filled up. That’s the great part about it.

Woj: That’s true.

Speaking of killing time, let’s talk about your fear of pigeons.

Geraldine: Oh, God.

Woj: Was this something to do with “Sesame Street” and Ernie’s obsession or was it that time that Elmo scared the pigeons away?

Geraldine: I don’t remember Elmo scaring the pigeons away, because I’m pre-Elmo. When I watched “Sesame Street” really the big star was Grover, Ernie, you know, that’s who we had. Cookie Monster made a rare appearance back in the days when he still ate cookies. Snuffleupagus was still a figment of Big Bird’s imagination and Big Bird would try to convince people that he was actually there.

This would cause so much anxiety in me, because I was like, “No, I saw it, too, Big Bird.” They actually changed that character and made him real because they were worried that children would feel that if they told an adult something that had happened to them that was real they wouldn’t be believed.

In terms of my fear of pigeons, though, it’s completely dissociated from “Sesame Street,” because I didn’t even know that “Sesame Street” had pigeons. So thank you for traumatizing me there. No, they’re just awful.

They’re just terrible. I will see one on the street and it’ll see me. Like it’s cool, just walk by it, just walk by and you will be fine. They know, they see me and they are like, “She’s trying to walk by, like she’s just gonna get out of this situation.” And they’ll stay still and I think I’ve almost made it past, but now the proximity between me and the pigeon is really close. And then they just take flight, aiming straight for my face.

I’ve told Rand that there are times where I’m like, maybe I should just open my mouth because that is what they are going for. Maybe I just deserve a mouthful of pigeon and…I forgot what we were talking about.

Do you feel that everyone deserves a mouthful of pigeon?

Geraldine: No, no, maybe some people.

A mouthful of pigeons. That’s maybe a name for my next book. I got to text my agent. Hold on.

Geraldine - No pigeons, please

Image Source: Go See Write

One last question. Netflix has just asked you to write the pilot of a new mini-series starring Jeff Goldblum and Jesse Eisenberg. What’s the central premise?

Geraldine: Jesse Eisenberg, really.

So, first of all, I do feel I do need to as an aside, tell you that I just learned that Netflix and chill does not mean that you go home and watch Netflix. I found out about like a month ago and I think I thought I was the last human who did and I have said, “We are going to Netflix and chill,” before and people laughed and I was like, “No, seriously.” So, that was fun.

I would love if Jesse Eisenberg played Jeff Goldblum’s long-lost son who encounters him later in life. Jesse Eisenberg is just an incredibly neurotic young man and Jeff Goldblum teaches him how to relax and be incredibly chill. But honestly, if it were just Jeff Goldblum just smiling and winking and posing, I would be fine with that, too. I would watch that.

If they were a crime fighting duo, that would be great. Scrap the father-son plot line and just have it be a romance. We’d be casting against type. I think we’d be doing something really interesting there. Jeff Goldblum is a chameleon of an actor, so I think there’s so much potential here.

Woj: What do you think his finest era was?

Geraldine: I think it doesn’t matter. It started the day he was born and it will never end.

Woj: Even in “Jurassic Park?”

Geraldine: As I have often said, the scene where he is lying shirtless, dampened with his own sweat because he is suffering from a T-Rex attack, that he brought upon himself to save children. That scene triggered an early puberty in me and I am afraid to watch it now as an adult because I’m pretty sure it will impregnate me.

Woj: Well, on that note…

Geraldine: Great, when are we gonna start recording?

Woj: Thank you so much.

Geraldine: Thank you.

Woj: It’s been an absolute pleasure.


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